Ahead of the forthcoming 70th Session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), shippers have been lobbying hard to secure increased environmental legislation for the industry.
In a letter to the IMO, The Danish Shipowners’ Association, Royal Belgian Shipowners’ Association, Maersk, Scandlines, J. Lauritzen, Unifeeder, and 45 other marine businesses, raised concerns that there are no plans for this type of legislation currently on the table with previous considerations of a global emissions cap for shipping have been pushed aside.
The letter calls on the IMO to “match the ambition of pace of UNFCCC [the organisation responsible for COP 21]”, “establish shipping’s fair share of the global responsibility to address climate change”, and take “ambitious actions that help drive investment in low-carbon solutions”.
Another joint industry submission made by BIMCO, International Chamber of Shipping, INTERCARGO, INTERTANKO and World Shipping Council represents a unified response from the shipping industry to the Paris Agreement on climate change, which entered into force on 5 October.
The joint industry submission calls on IMO Member States to finalise the adoption of a global CO2 data collection system for international shipping, as a precursor to the consideration of possible next steps to address the sector’s CO2 emissions. Among the top concerns for the industry are a timeline for the completion of this work, as well as the determination of a ‘fair share contribution’ towards reducing the world’s total CO2 emissions, of which international shipping is currently responsible for about 2.2%.
Meanwhile, the cross-industry coalition SEA\LNG (which includes Carnival Corporation & plc, DNV GL and the Port of Rotterdam) has highlighted the ability of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector to meet the future emissions requirements of the global shipping industry. It has offered a position statement which outlines the benefits of LNG as a marine fuel and offers its support for the implementation of MARPOL Annex VI for the prevention of air pollution by ships.
The statement says that the industry is making big steps in creating the infrastructure to enable quick, safe and cost effective LNG bunkering in key global ports, diminish the price premium for LNG-fuelled vessels, as well as working with regulators to establish consistent international and national regulations.
On the agenda
Hot items up for discussion at MEPC 70 which takes place at IMO headquarters from 24 to 28 October include the reduction of GHG emissions from ships, the 0.50% global cap on sulphur oxide emissions to be implemented on 1 January 2020, the designation of the North Sea and the Baltic Sea as emission control areas (ECA) for nitrogen oxides (NOx) and the Ballast Water and Sediments (BWM Convention), which will enter into force on 8 September 2017.
Source: Green Port